Online Health Community Website
I helped this NGO design a website that had 38.4% returning visits within 6 months of 'go-live'.
Figma, Skype, Papers, Cameras
What I did
“Online health community participation leads to direct benefits in the form of information utility and social support and that information utility also helps to shape perceptions of patient empowerment among community participants.” – Online health communities, An assessment of the influence of participation on patient empowerment outcomes, Johnstone, Worrell, Di Gangi & Wasko, Information Technology & People (May 2013).
The above is why I was super excited to take on this Project as a Freelance UI/UX Designer and this Case study chronicles the design processes involved in this Design project.
In Nigeria, there is no Centralized Health Information platform where healthy or recovering individuals can visit to learn about their health and new symptoms and get help till they are whole and/or maintain that health.
Getting the right information about a new illness or symptom or getting first-hand help online can be a chore, as you would need to verify the information with multiple sources first.
The key focus above led me to focus on some of the goals which would help provide the required solutions.
Challenges that are been addressed
High user conversion.
Questionnaires were needed to understand people's attitudes towards their health and how they get health information.
This started with quantitative and qualitative surveys to deepen insights. This took place in the Lekki and Ikeja area of Lagos state. The Survey had 517 participants in Lagos, who participated in the Survey.
This exercise helped to reveal the participants' preferences, requirements age, income level, health habits, source of health information, how they relate to the health information gotten online, how open they are with their doctors/health workers, etc.
We proceeded to the focus group for two reasons.
The participants here were recruited from the questionnaire study.
The discussion was directed by a previously coded discussion guide, comprising 3 main thematic areas, which are :
This was created to reflect the User's habits, pain points, goals, routine, motivation, etc. Our Target focus is on middle-aged Professionals who have middle to high income (income data is based on the NBS Income value) in Nigeria.
Based on the focus group, we saw the need to set up 4 personas based on if they were sick, healthy, recuperating, or managing a condition. We referred to them throughout the entire product development process.
User persona showing the 4 user types - the sick, the recuperating, managing a health condition & the healthy.
I started designing the wireframes from the features requested by the Users, as this gave a lot of insight into what they would like to see and how the information should be represented.
Success for this product translates to getting new users to the website and keeping them as converts.
Since I already have an idea about the features and how to use design elements to aid with the main aim of this product, I kickstarted interface designing.
I had it at the back of my mind that this product needs to be conservative, no shouting colors but still aesthetically pleasing.
After the UI was done, I prototyped it and we tested with the same crop of participants. This was needed to see if the designed solution was usable & met the issues that had been discussed earlier.
The usability test was a moderated one. It was held in the makeshift lab which had cameras broadcasting the sessions to the Stakeholders in the boardroom. Also, the tester's screens were recorded.
Some feedback from the User Testing,
Feedback from testing sessions
From the testing sessions and the feedback from there, the design was updated. After the testing sessions and the first set of iterations, a couple of internal feedback reports were taken, and after each feedback session, iterations followed. Unfortunately, this became a loop, as iterations continued for a long time.
I discovered that :
The respondents turned to the internet first for ALL their information needs, including health information. Access to the internet was mainly through their mobile devices.
Google remains an important gateway for user-generated information searches, and consumers believe they need multiple searches to make an informed decision. Market entry partners may help shorten this user journey to an informed decision.
An online health information platform should offer expert, disease-specific advice, and must be searchable, affordable, and with locally relevant and contextual information to accommodate the motivations and concerns of potential users.
For-profit organizations are more willing to offer market entry services and non-profit organizations were more willing to offer information curation and endorsements.
Managing Stakeholders is a very important part of the job, of a Product Designer. You can only manage but the guys who call the shots, call the shots!